The Courtenay family was a recusant Catholic family in England during the Elizabethan period, with recusant meaning that they refused to conform to the new Protestant religion. The Courtenay family was intermarried with the Hervey/Harvey family of Suffolk. The Courtenays were involved in New World exploration, specifically with other Catholic gentry and nobles attempting to find a safe haven for Catholics. These nobles eventually did through the founding of the stateof Maryland. Later in the 17th century, Virginia Governor John Harvey was known to be a Papist sympathizer through his friendship with Lord Baltimore and support of the Catholic Maryland colony in a dispute with Virginia. The Harvey family was intermarried with the Catholic Browne family. Magdalen Dacres Browne was the grandmother of Henry Wriothesley, 3rd Earl of Southampton and the literary patron of Shakespeare.